LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska wildlife officials are urging owners of small pets — even those in cities — to be vigilant in protecting them from coyotes.

Coyotes are common throughout Nebraska, including in some urban areas where there are creek bottoms, green space with tall grass and agricultural fields.

The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission cautions people against approaching or feeding a coyote. It also suggests not leaving pet food outside and keeping any eye on pets outside, even if they're out for just a few minutes. Pets should be kept on a leash and not allowed to roam at night.

The commission says most interactions people experience with coyotes are between coyotes and dogs due to the territorial nature of both animals. Coyotes typically avoid people, so attacks on human are rare.

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